SCOTUS crushes Biden’s COVID vaccine mandate on large employers

President Joe Biden just received another crushing blow.

Fox News reports that the U.S. Supreme Court agreed Thursday to block Biden’s mandate on COVID-19 vaccinations for employees of American businesses with more than 100 workers on the payroll.

The backstory

Last week, the justices of the U.S. Supreme Court heard challenges to two of Biden’s COVID-related vaccine mandates, including one that applies to large employers, put in place by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), and one that applies to health care workers at facilities that receive federal funding, put in place by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service (CMS).

As for OSHA, its rule forces employers with more than 100 employees to force their workers to get vaccinated or continue to be tested regularly for COVID-19.

Those challenging the mandate argue that the rule goes beyond OSHA’s authority, a line of reasoning that seemed to resonate with the Supreme Court’s conservative majority.

The rulings

On Thursday, the SCOTUS ruled 6 to 3 to block the OSHA mandate, according to Breitbart, with Chief Justice John Roberts siding with the court’s five other conservative members Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch, Brett Kavanaugh, and Amy Coney Barrett.

The justices weren’t quite on board with challengers’ arguments against the CMS mandate, however. The majority reportedly felt the government has some authority over facilities that receive federal funding via Medicare and Medicaid.

Accordingly, the justices ruled 5–4 Thursday to uphold the CMS mandate, as Roberts and Kavanaugh sided with the court’s three liberals: Elena Kagan, Sonia Sotomayor, and Stephen Breyer.

The fallout

The split decision by the high court left Democrats reeling. According to Fox, social media was flooded with “anger, attacks on Republicans, and calls for Democrats to pack the Supreme Court.”

Biden, for his part, settled for expressing his disappointment with the justices’ decision. “I am disappointed that the Supreme Court has chosen to block common-sense life-saving requirements for employees at large businesses that were grounded squarely in both science and the law,” he said in a statement.

“The Court has ruled that my administration cannot use the authority granted to it by Congress to require this measure,” he added, “but that does not stop me from using my voice as president to advocate for employers to do the right thing to protect Americans’ health and economy.” Oh, brother.

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